Published: Fri, June 22, 2018
Business | By Tara Barton

Intel boss Brian Krzanich ousted for violating 'fraternisation policy'

Intel boss Brian Krzanich ousted for violating 'fraternisation policy'

Chipmaker Intel has announced that its chief executive, Brian Krzanich, is stepping down with immediate effect because of "a violation of Intel's non-fraternisation policy". At Intel, Krzanich led the company at a time when it faced great challenges due to the rise of smartphones, and consequently companies like Qualcomm and ARM that make technologies and processors that go inside the phones and tablets.

Intel has named chief financial officer Bob Swan as interim chief effective, and he will take over from Krzanich immediately.

The Intel board said it accepted Krzanich's resignation, noting all employees are expected to respect Intel's values and code of conduct.

Krzanich has worked at Intel since 1982, initially as an engineer but eventually working his way up to chief executive in May 2013.

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Bottom line: Intel only recently found out about the relationship and is seemingly looking to distance itself from the situation, having already removed Krzanich's bio from its website. The company says it "has a robust succession planning process in place and has begun a search for a permanent CEO". But he resigned from the president's manufacturing council past year after Trump's comments on white supremacist protests in Virginia, and has kept a low profile on that front ever since. Krzanich, 58, leaves Intel at record performance levels financially but facing a group of new challengers as the computer processing market it dominates reshapes itself to deal with new trends such as artificial intelligence.

Intel declined to give any further information about the probe. Its first three CEOs were also co-founders: Bob Noyce, Gordon Moore and Andy Grove. Otellini, who died a year ago, spent his whole career at Intel. Despite the relationship being described as "consensual" the contractual clause prevents any managers from romantic involvement with their employees. Former CFO Stacy Smith announced his retirement last summer and Renee James, Intel's former president, left in 2015.

As CEO, he tried to guide the tech giant along a growth path predicated on big data and self-driving cars. "Intel does need to shore up its manufacturing execution".

Swan became CFO in 2016, and once held that position at eBay. Intel's stock was down close to 2 percent following the news of his ouster Thursday.

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